sarvabhootaani kaunteya prakritim yaanti maamikaam |
kalpakshaye punastaani kalpaadau visrijaamyaham || 7 ||

 
All beings attain my Prakriti when an age ends, O Kaunteya. I project them again when (another) age begins.
 
sarvabhootaani : all beings
kaunteya : O Kaunteya
prakritim : Prakriti
yaanti : attain
maamikaam : my
kalpakshaye : end of an age
punaha : again
taani : them
kalpaadau : beginning of an age
visrijaami: project
aham : I
 
Previously, Shri Krishna compared wind in space to the multitude of beings in Ishvara. Here, he asserts that all those beings go to Ishvara’s Prakriti at the end of a “kalpa” or age. They then come back into existence when the kalpa starts all over again.
 
In the last chapter, Shri Krishna had explained the process of creation and dissolution. He spoke about the day and night of Lord Brahma. Here, he adds more detail by revealing the orchestrator of creation and dissolution. It is Prakriti. In an earlier context, this word was translated as nature. In this context, we will keep the original word since the meaning is a little different.
 
Prakriti is a system that tracks the karmas or actions of each and every being in the universe. When every being’s karma is exhausted, Shri Krishna, through the medium of Prakriti, begins the process of dissolution, just like we go to sleep when we exhaust all our actions for the day. When the time is right for the next set of actions to begin manifesting, Prakriti “wakes” up everyone and begins the process of creation.
 
Now, we notice that Shri Krishna does not use the word “create” here. Instead, he uses the word “project”. Prakriti is similar to a movie projector in that it does not create anything new, but projects names and forms on the screen, just like waves and foam in the ocean. As we saw earlier, creation and dissolution is a matter of perspective. A child only sees waves and foam. The adult, seeing the very same waves and foam, knows that it is ultimately water.
 
Similarly, creation and dissolution on a cosmic scale is “real” only if we get stuck at the level of names and forms. The jnyaani or the wise seeker sees the names and forms come and go, but knows that everything, ultimately, is only Ishvara. The difference between the jnyaani and everyone else is that the wise seeker’s perspective that comes from having the knowledge of Ishvara. This knowledge is paramount.
 
So then, what is the relationship between Ishvara, Prakriti and us? This is explained in the next shloka.

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